Getting the insurance company to pay any claim is like pulling teeth. However, I’m giving you a roadmap to help make it a little easier to get the insurance company to pay your claim for water damage. When you file an insurance claim for water damage, it’s never easy to deal with the insurance company.
How to Get Insurance to Pay for Water Damage: 7 Steps Suggested by Public Adjuster
1. The initial call to the insurance company can make or break your claim
What you say is going to carry the weight moving forward. Whatever you say can determine the success of your claim. It’s that simple. Follow the KISS method when filing your claim.
KEEP IT SIMPLE STUPID
2. Sudden or Long Term Leak
Sudden leaks will give you a better possibility of your claim being paid. Long term leaks are usually not covered by insurance companies, however, we do have a way to get a long term leak claim paid because of a loophole we use against the insurance company. But again, please keep point #1 in mind. If you have a long term leak, I would suggest getting a public adjuster to put your claim in the best possible situation to get paid.
3. Claim Handling Procedures
Before you rush out to get an estimate from a contractor, make sure you allow the insurance company adjuster to come out first to do their estimate. Then, request a copy of the estimate.
NOTE: 99% of the time, their estimate will be a lowball estimate.
Letting them do their estimate, then getting a copy of the estimate, will enable you to see just how badly they are trying to taking advantage of your by paying the claim as low as they can.
4. Make Sure You Document Everything
Make sure you get an invoice from the plumber (if repairs were done). Take photos of any pipe replacement, bad water line, any water valves that were replaced. Anything the plumber replaced I would make sure you ask the plumber to keep it or at the very least take photos. Also, take photos or video, of any damages the water caused.
5. After the Insurance Company Adjuster Inspection
Once the adjuster has come to your home, you requested a copy of the estimate and you have it, if the claim amount they are offering is a lowball figure, I would suggest one of two things:
A. Hire a Public Adjuster
B. Produce your estimate from a contractor and ask for a reinspection by the insurance company
You will ask for a reinspection on the basis that they failed to recognize and account for the true value of the claim. They failed to take all damages into account in their estimate.
6. Final Attempts of Trying to Get Claim Settled
The following are additional “final” attempts you can possibly take in trying to get your insurance claim for water damage settled.
A. Contact the Adjusters Manager
B. Get a Second Estimate
C. If they refuse a reinspection, make sure they put that in writing (email)
D. File for Mediation with the State of Florida (if you live in Florida)
7. Email should be your primary form of Communication
Email should be your primary form of communication. You want a paper trail of the conversations. Never write long emails. Keep all emails to 1-3 sentences if possible. Any phone conversations should be your secondary form of communication. Any phone conversations should then be put into an email summary of the discussions that took place.
Should you have a question about or claim feel free to call me.
Mike Keeler, Licensed Public Adjuster in Florida, (754) 252-5438